Albany, W1S

Road in/near Mayfair, existing between 1771 and now

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MAP YEAR:1750180018301860190019502020Fullscreen map
Road · Mayfair · W1S ·
November
24
2019
The Albany is an apartment complex in Piccadilly, divided into apartments in 1802.

The Albany was built in the years after 1771 by Sir William Chambers for the 1st Viscount Melbourne as Melbourne House. In 1791, Prince Frederick, Duke of Albany, took up residence. The Duke had lived there for only ten years when his debts and extravagance caught up with him and forced him to sell. In 1802 the Duke gave up the house and it was converted by Henry Holland into 69 bachelor apartments (known as "sets").

The main block was subdivided the main block and its two service wings, and by adding two new parallel long buildings covering most of the garden, running to a new rear gate building on Burlington Gardens.


Citation information: London Street Names (book)
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Mayfair

Mayfair (originally called The May Fair) is an area of central London, by the east edge of Hyde Park. Mayfair boasts some of the capital's most exclusive property of all types.

Mayfair is named after the annual fortnight-long May Fair that took place on the site that is Shepherd Market today. In 1764, the May Fair was banned at Shepherd Market because the well-to-do residents of the area disliked the fair's disorderliness, and it moved to Fair Field in Bow in the East End of London.

The district is now mainly commercial, with many former homes converted into offices for major corporations headquarters, embassies and also hedge funds and real estate businesses. There remains a substantial quantity of residential property as well as some exclusive shopping and London's largest concentration of luxury hotels and many restaurants. Rents are among the highest in London and the world.

The freehold of a large section of Mayfair also belongs to the Crown Estate.

The renown and prestige of Mayfair could have grown in the popular mind because it is the most expensive property on the British Monopoly set. Victor Watson, the head of Waddingtons at the time, and his secretary Marjory Phillips, chose the London place names for the British version — Ms Phillips apparently went for a walk around London to choose suitable sites.
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